4 Stars: You can be confident that your donations are being used wisely and well
December 9, 2020 — Connecticut magazine starts its list of the state’s 10 “Top Dollar” non-profits with a question and answer:
“Looking to back an organization that knows how to make the most of your donation? These 10 Connecticut-based non-profits have each earned four stars from charity-assessment monitor Charity Navigator.”
The only environmental organization on that Top 10 list: the Connecticut Audubon Society.
Donors are right to question whether the money they give to a non-profit is being put to good use. You want to be as sure as possible that your gifts are protecting birds and Connecticut’s environment in general.
2020 marks the third year in a row that Charity Navigator has designated Connecticut Audubon a four-star organization. Out of approximately 1,000 non-profits in Connecticut, only 48 received four stars in 2020.
“This is our highest possible rating and indicates that your organization adheres to sector best practices and executes its mission in a financially efficient way,” Michael Thatcher, the president and CEO of Charity Navigator, said in a letter to Connecticut Audubon Executive Director Patrick Comins. “This exceptional designation from Charity Navigator sets Connecticut Audubon Society apart from its peers and demonstrates to the public its trustworthiness.”
You can be confident and happy that your support is being put to good use. Here are examples of how your donations to Connecticut Audubon are protecting the state’s birds.
- H. Smith Richardson Preserve. Invasive plants are being replaced with native species, and the south section is being improved with a pollinator meadow, seed-producing grasses, and shrub-scrub habitat. Funding from Connecticut Audubon members, led by the Friends of Smith Richardson, and from the Long Island Sound Futures Fund/National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
- Deer Pond Farm. Dead white ash trees have been removed and native shrubs, trees, wildflowers, and grasses have been planted, to create nesting areas for shrub-nesting birds and feeding areas for birds in migration. Funding from Connecticut Audubon members, and from the Robert F. Schumann Foundation, the Hollis Declan Leverett Fund, and the Connecticut Ornithological Association.
- Morgan R. Chaney Preserve. Ten acres are being managed as shrub-scrub habitat for nesting birds. Funding from Connecticut Audubon members, and from the Natural Resources Conservation Service.
- Audubon Alliance for Coastal Waterbirds. Piping Plovers, American Oystercatchers, and Least Terns are being protected on their nesting beaches. Funding from Connecticut Audubon members, and from the Long Island Sound Futures Fund/National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
- Harlo N. Haagenson Preserve. Dead white ash trees have been removed, and invasive autumn olive, multiflora rose, privet, and burning bush have been cleared from an overgrown meadow. Funding from members.
- Richard Croft Memorial Preserve. Habitat has been restored for the New England cottontail rabbit, and for birds that nest in shrub-scrub areas. Funding from members and from the Natural Resources Conservation Service.
- Osprey Nation. This ongoing project documents the nesting success of the state’s Ospreys in order to react effectively to conservation concerns. Funding from members, and from the DEEP Return a Gift to Wildlife program and Eversource.
- Bafflin Sanctuary. Fields and shrubby areas are being maintained for grassland and young-forest birds. A wetland water-level control project benefits marsh birds and waterfowl in conjunction with DEEP. Funding from members.
- Trail Wood. Oak trees killed by gypsy moths have been removed, and new areas of shrub-scrub and transitional forest are being managed for nesting birds. Funding from members, and from the Hollis Declan Leverett Fund and DEEP.
- Larsen Sanctuary. Invasive plants have been replaced with native species along several trails. Funding by members, with volunteer labor provided by the Friends of Larsen.